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— The Department of Workforce Development made $167.9 million in overpayments on unemployment claims over a three-year period and often takes years to recoup money that shouldn’t have been paid to applicants, according to a legislative audit.
The Legislative Audit Bureau found 681,400 overpayments between fiscal years 2011-12 and 2013-14. Those who intentionally provided inaccurate information on their claims accounted for $86.3 million in overpayments even though they were just 9.5 percent of the improperly paid claims.
The audit also found it typically takes years to fully recoup payments and said DWD has overstated its success in doing so.
The audit also found almost 1.7 million calls from those applying for unemployment were blocked in 2013-14 because call center staff were busy and telephone queues were full. That was 60.2 percent of the calls placed to the centers that year.
Traffic was heaviest in December 2013 and January, when more than 80 percent of calls were blocked. Less than 10 percent were blocked from February through June.
Read the audit:
— DWD Secretary Reggie Newson focused on agency efforts to address blocked calls in his letter to auditors. He noted DWD has implemented an online system for initial and continuing claims that will allow filing from a computer, tablet or smartphone seven days a week.
Senate Minority Leader-elect Jennifer Shilling, D-La Crosse, slammed the Walker administration for failing to deal with the backlog and said Dems have previously proposed ways to cut wait times, only to be rebuffed.
“This lack of service is completely unacceptable,” she said.
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— A new report finds Wisconsin’s state-local tax burden claimed 11.4 percent of residents’ personal income, putting the state 12th in the country.
The Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance review of Census Bureau data found that ranking was up one notch from the 13th most taxed state in 2011, though it doesn’t account for income and property tax cuts Walker and lawmakers approved earlier this year.
Wisconsin’s state and local tax burden ranked 10th in 2009 at 11.2 percent of personal income and 13th in 2011 at 11.7 percent.
See the report:
— Thirty-nine Wisconsin manufacturers have been nominated for the 2014 Wisconsin Manufacturer of the Year awards.
The nominees include Alliance Laundry Systems of Ripon, Plexus Corp. of Neenah and Super Steel of Milwaukee.
The accounting firm Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, the law firm of Michael Best & Friedrich, and Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce sponsor the annual MOTY awards program. The sponsors will celebrate the nominees and reveal the winners at a ceremony Feb. 26 at The Pfister Hotel in Milwaukee.
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University Research Park
Cambridge Major Laboratories plans $20 million expansion
Exact Sciences sells more stock
More manufacturers upbeat about 2015 revenue growth, ASQ survey finds
State’s GAAP deficit drops to lowest level since 2001
Wisconsin ranked as 12th highest taxed state
Mone seeks ‘open door’ with business community
ABC Supply acquires Siding World
Binding referendum on streetcar borrowing may be off the table
Survey: Saving presents biggest obstacle to retirement
Wisconsin overpaid $168M in unemployment
UW-Madison Office of Corporate Relations
Madison Gas & Electric
Wisconsin Technology Council
University Research Park
– South’s Healthcare Pathway lauded for connecting students to careers
– MSTC grads fuel stainless steel manufacturing
FINANCIAL SERVICES ^top^
– Streamlined electronic filing depository launched
– ThedaCare joins effort to prepare for climate change
– Medical College of Wisconsin awarded $5.5 million for concussion study
– Agrace offers health coaching
– Family Health Center leader receives Heritage Award
– Couture developer pledges workforce development funds
– Perhach to lead Quarles & Brady’s Milwaukee office
– Bruker pays penalty for improper payments to Chinese officials
– Nine area companies among manufacturer nominees
– OSHA cites extreme temperatures at Darien plant
– Journal Sentinel initiates print edition changes
– Cameron Parsons named GMR Marketing CEO; Gary Reynolds named chairman
– Walker to review use of fishing, hunting fees for iron mine review
– State budget deficit sees big drop but still tops $1 billion
REAL ESTATE ^top^
– La Crosse County poised to buy property near landfill
– Indoor go-kart track proposed for former American TV site in Pewaukee
– Former Lighthouse Development owner files for bankruptcy
– Loan default could lead to sale of Downer Ave. buildings, theater
– Apartments, library recommended for south side Milwaukee building
– Shopbop to close Bop store while expanding local presence
– Accusations fly at Willy Street Co-op over union issues
– Outpost Natural Foods Co-op to open Lindsay Heights store in 2015
– Holey Moley Doughnuts opens second location in U.S. Bank building
– Billboard property among Packers’ latest acquisitions
– Lammi Sports Management acquires Wisconsin Athletic Hall of Fame
Wisconsin Economic Development Association
*ABC Supply Co.: Acquires Siding World
*ASQ: Survey finds manufacturers’ outlook positive for 2015, anticipate continued revenue growth
*First Business Financial Services: Craig Cerbins of First Business Bank – Milwaukee earns Certified Treasury Professional® designation
*Fond du Lac Area Convention and Visitors Bureau: Fond Du Lac’s honored Sturgeon Stampede goes international in February
*Integrated Health Network of Wisconsin: Names business intelligence director
*Marquette University: Researchers team up with former Green Bay Packers player to explore life after football
*Menasha Packaging: Purchases new flexographic printing press
*Michael Best Strategies: Welcomes Katie B. White
*Movin’ and Lubin’: Opens second vehicle repair shop in New Berlin
*NCI-Roberts Construction: Announces exclusive partnership with Building God’s Way
*New North: Dulmes named to board of directors
*Quarles and Brady: Selects Katherine Perhach as new Milwaukee office managing partner
*Union Cab of Madison: Receives recognition as a Green Master in Wisconsin Green Masters Program
*UW Health: Wisconsin’s health: significant gaps by race, income, and geography
*UW-Milwaukee: National Academy of Inventors and UWM announce NAI Fellow
*Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation: Cambridge Major Laboratories announces expansion in Washington County
*Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation: State now accepting nominees for 2015 Governor’s Export Achievement Awards
*Wisconsin Manufacturer of the Year: 2014 award nominees announced
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